Maryland Democrats: Yes to Felons Voting, No to Better Prison Conditions

The General Assembly is set to override Gov. Hogan’s veto on Bill SB-340 this Tuesday.

This action will allow convicted felons to vote while they are still serving their sentence on parole or probation.  Gov. Hogan stated in a press release states that he vetoed this bill because, “persons released from incarceration on parole or mandatory supervision are still serving time as a debt to society for their action.”  The Governor explained, “parole and mandatory supervision are only conditional releases from incarceration because the released inmate must comply with the conditions of release imposed by the Parole Commission. Similarly, a felon on probation would likely be supervised and have conditions imposed, the violation of which may subject the individual to incarceration.”

Currently, Maryland is one of the 39 states allowing ex-convicts to vote after they have completed their sentences – including any probation and parole.

In order to override Gov. Hogan’s veto, the Democrat-dominated Maryland General Assembly needed 29 votes in the State Senate. But they were one vote short until a new Senator from Montgomery County was sworn in.  The Democrats are set to override the veto on Tuesday.

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Once a person has served their sentence, they have paid their debt to society and have hopefully been rehabilitated to rejoin society.  But one must wonder how these Democratic Delegates will justify their positions that individuals convicted of serious crimes should get to participate in civil society before their sentence is complete.

This concern for felons does not extend to funding necessary improvements to the state’s detention facilities.   The all-Democrat Montgomery County Delegation is unhappy with Gov. Hogan’s decision to build a new jail in Baltimore.  Instead, they want to put this money into costly projects at Maryland universities.  

Currently, there are about 40,000 felons in Maryland who are out of prison on parole or probation.  Once the Democrat controlled Senate overrides the Gov. Hogan’s veto on SB-340, these individuals will be transformed into new voters that will be able to vote during this year’s primaries and general election.

If you wish to make your voice heard please click here for the General Assembly contact information.

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